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Ebony retains humour monarch title

Published: 
Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Klassic Ruso calypso tent veteran Brother Ebony, Fitzroy Joseph, performs Still The Champion to register a repeat win at the Tuco National Humorous Calypso Monarch Finals, held at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Saturday evening. PHOTO: DAVID WEARS

Defending National Humorous Calypso Monarch, Brother Ebony (Fitzroy Joseph), successfully retained his title at the final of the 2016 contest staged at the Grand Stand, Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, on Saturday night. The annual competition was presented by Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (Tuco). 

In the first round, Ebony, appearing in position six among the nine finalists, won the loudest and longest applause from patrons for a delightfully funny selection titled Still The Champion. Audience response was the same in the second round when he delivered another rib-tickler with the title Stupid People.

The two creatively-composed and intelligently-executed songs earned the veteran bard the $50,000 first prize, while etching his name in the calypso record books as the second successful defender of the title. The Incredible Myron B (Myron Bruce) was the first. A cast member of Klassic Ruso, the calypso tent operated by the north zone of Tuco, Ebony is among the calypsonians involved in conducting the Calypso Workshops regularly hosted by the zone.

Second place and the $30,000 prize was won by Dr Rhythm (Shawn Mc Intyre) for his choices Something About The Tablet and Eff In. A competent composer and musician, he is a cast member of the south-based Kaiso Showcase tent. 

The Loveable Lunatic, Crazy (Edwin Ayoung), celebrating his 72nd birthday on the occasion, took third spot and $20,000 for his contributions Four Calls and The Electrician, the latter being the song with which he made his calypso debut in Sparrow’s Original Young Brigade (OYB) tent in 1972.

Winning fourth position and a prize of $14,000 was Spicey (Tammico Moore) for her offerings D Champion and Man In Dat. She is a member of the Kaiso House cast, and a full-time music student currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Performing Arts and Music.

Contestants placing fifth to ninth each won $8,000 for their efforts. They were as follows:
• Mr Nature (Michael John)—Old Age and Dumb Witness
• Sexy Suzie (Natasha Nurse)—The Results Are In and How To Keep Yuh Man
• Brother Mudada (Alan Fortune)—Dog and Fries and Dem Judges
• Kid Kalaloo (Julien Hunte)—Victoria Secret and Ah Cyah See
• Kaiso Knobby (Carl Barrington)—Marriage Advice and Not Me.

In the first round of competition, the basis on which points were awarded was 50 for lyrics, 30 for music, and ten each for presentation and crowd response. In the second round, which allowed for “calypsoes of a humorous nature” chosen by the contestant that could have been performed prior to Ash Wednesday of the previous year, and is not limited to the repertoire of the contestant,” Ten points each were awarded for rendition, presentation, and crowd response.

Adjudicating the contest was a panel headed by Errol Fabien and included Jason Seecharan, Kelvin Jacobs, Lois Lewis, Ronald Forde, Alicia Jagessar, and Nadine Gonzales. Making guest appearances on the programme were Ras Kommanda (Steve Pascall), Relator (Willard Harris), and Baron (Timothy Watkins). Musical accompaniment was provided by Cummings and the Wailers, and show host duties shared between Godfrey Pierre and Damion Melville.

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